Portable AC units are most appropriate for individual rooms and include portable, window, and through-the-wall configurations.
You may be surprised to discover that there is not a lot of overlap between top central AC brands and top portable AC brands.
In fact, the only brands to make both lists were Amana, Airwell, and Kenmore, with none of these in the top five. Our final ranking is based on a careful and highly detailed analysis, as explained more fully in the paragraph below.
Our results for the top ten portable AC brands are presented for your consideration in the list to the left.
Before we get into specific information about each of our top ten brands, a few words about our approach and methodology are in order. We have collected data from a variety of expert sources, including the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), Home & Garden, Consumer Reports, Sensible Home, Green Guide, Consumer Search, Popular Mechanics, Galt Tech, Factoidz, and Consumer Guide. We have also collected information from a large number of consumer review sites, including MySears, Epinions, Amazon, Buzzle, Viewpoints, GardenWeb, Buzzillions, DoItYourself, CompareTheBrands, Web Informer, Hub Pages, Shopping.com, Reviews Ahoy, Associated Content, Shopzilla, BuyerZone, MetaEfficient, RateItAll, Wize, FurnaceCompare, Consumerist, and Recommended Buys. We then took all of the information and processed it to arrive at a consumer score for each brand, taking into consideration such factors as selection, quality, price, performance, availability, experience, durability, and customer support. These scores then served as the basis for our top ten ranking.
We give first place to Friedrich, a company that traces its roots to the 1800s and which has been manufacturing room air conditioners since the 1950s. For many years, Friedrich has produced market leading products which set the standard in terms of technology and effectiveness. Today, Friedrich offers a broad range of portable, window, and through-the-wall units for all possible cooling needs.
Second place goes to LG, the international electronics conglomerate which is perhaps even better known for its mobile phones and televisions. However, LG also manufactures a range of home appliances and its air conditioners are among the most highly rated of all the portable AC products out there. LG offers a variety of AC systems and units which are appreciated by consumers for their user-friendly controls, sleek design, quiet operation, and effective cooling.
Third place goes to GE, a global industrial leader with a storied history that traces its roots back to the transformative inventions of Thomas Edison. One of the company’s numerous brands is GE Appliances, which manufactures everything from refrigerators and ranges to water heaters and washing machines. The company makes portable and room air conditioners that are arguably the most powerful on the market today. In fact, the only reason that GE is not rated even higher is because their AC products tend to be more expensive than comparable brands.
Fourth place goes to Haier, a multinational home appliance and consumers electronics giant headquartered in China. Even though Haier has only been around since the 1980s, it has rapidly become a global brand and a leader in the production of quality home products. Haier makes excellent portable AC products which are widely available throughout the North American market.
Rounding out our top five is Frigidaire, which is owned by Electrolux, the Swedish appliance manufacturing conglomerate that has grown since its founding in the early 1900s to become one of the largest makers of consumer durable goods in the world. Frigidaire is traditionally known for its refrigerators, but has expanded to other cooling products and appliance types and today manufactures a number ofl excellent portable air conditioning products.
In sixth place is Kenmore, the home appliance megabrand started by Sears. The Kenmore brand contains a broad range of products, including everything from washers and dryers to stoves and refrigerators to heat pumps and furnaces to air purifiers and vacuum cleaners. Kenmore makes a line of solid portable air conditioners. While these may not be the most powerful or highest quality AC products, they receive high points for affordability, durability, and reliability.
In seventh and eighth are Amana and Sharp. Amana is a traditional HVAC manufacturer which is owned by Goodman. In addition to central heating and cooling products, Amana manufacturers several models of portable air conditioners which receive high marks from consumers. By contrast, Sharp is a multinational electronics manufacturer based in Japan. Over time, Sharp has grown its home appliance manufacturing operation and today makes a number of high quality products, including several models of affordable air conditioners.
Finally, in ninth and tenth are Airwell and DeLonghi. Airwell owns the Fedders brand and manufactures both central cooling systems and portable AC products. DeLonghi is an Italian appliance manufacturer and makes both portable heaters and air conditioners. The reviews of both companies’ portable AC products have been mixed. Many consumers enjoy their products, but a number have suggested that it is possible to find better value and enhanced quality for a similar price.